Lake Manyara National Park is a pristine park situated in the Northern part of Tanzania, approximately an hour from Arusha town. The park is situated at the bottom of the western floor of the Great Rift Valley escarpment. It features ground water forest, which is bolstered by underground springs.
The park features abundant wildlife such as hippos, klipspringer, elephants, buffaloes, giraffes, and baboons. It’s also home to impudent rock-climbing lions and diminutive dik-dik, an alkaline lake hosting millions of flamingos and birdlife as well as diverse vegetation that changes seasonally.
Although Lake Manyara Park is one of Tanzania’s smallest parks, it is very surprising that it features abundant wildlife like other large parks. The flora and fauna in Lake Manyara never fail to captivate a lover of the animal kingdom.
The park’s major attraction is the popular tree-climbing lions, which is an impressive sight to behold and you’ll find many of them in the lake’s broken forest and escarpment. Zebras, impalas, warthogs, and waterbucks are quite popular in the park. The millions of flamingos and other birdlife hosted by the lake which covers one-third of the park, but shrinks considerably in the dry season is a must-see for any safaris.
Lake Manyara is a shallow, alkaline lake which expands and contracts according to the seasons within a long silvery bowl of salt deposits. Inside the region of the lake are wide green floodplains and further as you move away, are groups of blended acacia forests.
Birdlife in Lake Manyara is exceptional with flocks of pelicans and pink shading flamingoes, egrets, storks, eagles, guinea fowl, hornbills among many other species. Lake Manyara is the place you can visit the exceptional engaging red-robbed pastoralists who are crowded in a boma.
From mountain bike tours to long walking treks, fly camping and bird watching the adventurous Lake Manyara safari offers various activities to meet the interests of guests with differing objectives. Canoe safaris are also offered when water levels are suitable. Guests are entertained by evening campfire performances with Maasai warriors.
Inside the park, there are several accommodation options that will suit your budget and preference. There’s a luxurious tree lodge known as ‘Lake Manyara Tree Lodge, which is embedded in a trunk of ancient mahogany that matches well with the natural spectacular natural surroundings with enjoyable views of the tree climbing lions and the Rift Valley. Lying amidst mature trees and flowers, the Kudu Lodge and Camp is perfect for your safari visit to Lake Manyara National Park. The lodge comes with comfortable private bungalows, restaurants, perfect cuisines, well-stocked bars and internet facilities. Other lodges in the park include Lemala Manyara Lodge, Lake Manyara Wildlife Lodge, Manyara Ranch Tented Camp, Escarpment Luxury Lodge, Kirurumu Manyara Lodge, and Lake Manyara Serena Lodge.
The flora, fauna, wildlife, birding, and vegetation in Lake Manyara should be explored all year long. However, the dry season runs from late June to September and it is the best time to go visit the park for game viewing. Afternoon visits are usually organized for by most safari companies but taking a morning one is far much better as there are fewer other vehicles yet with more wildlife activity.
April and May are the wettest with the least accommodation costs but logistical air and road transport costs, park fees, meals, and activities remain the same all year round. This period is perfect for bird watching as varying species of birds migrate to the lake at this time of the year.